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Wonderful adaptation of the Three Musketeers. Faye Dunaway is perfectly cast as Milady de Winter.
The Three Musketeers is a tale I’m quite familiar with, and it’s a good thing. Richard Lester’s film is somewhat chaotic and it races from one subplot to the next at a pace that would drive me mad if I didn’t already have a handle on what was happening. It’s a slightly different interpretation of the events from what I remember of the novel, but it still works and almost is coherent when you know about the overarching themes. The action in the film is good, and the stunt team for the movie deserves an award for some of these elaborate tricks that they set up. I found myself looking forward to the next sword fight in order to see what kind of new stunts they would try and how they would creatively interact with the sets and props in the scene. The cast might be the most notable thing about this version of The Three Musketeers. It is loaded with legends of film from Charlton Heston to Christopher Lee. The titular musketeers were all unique characters and I thought they were established well even though they were all a bit bumbling and silly at times. Michael York took some getting used to as D’Artagnan because he was a bit old for the role. I couldn’t help feeling that they needed an actor with a bit more innocence and youthful vigor, but York is talented enough to make the character likable even if he’s not the perfect casting choice. Special mention needs to be made to Roy Kinnear who seems to have the best handle on the tone of the movie, and every time he speaks I was chuckling. The weird thing about Richard Lester’s interpretation of The Three Musketeers is that he so aggressively aims for comedy. In many ways this movie felt like it was someone taking a shot at making a Monty Python style of film. The way they cut from one set piece to the next and include so much silliness it was more parody than serious adventure film. Because of this tone I kept wondering how serious I was supposed to be taking the plot. The film had too much story to be a pure farce, but it also had too much goofiness to create drama or tension in the action scenes. Each time swords would come out the light adventure music and all the joking around made me question if I’m supposed to believe anyone is dying or not. I suspect if I watched it again then I might lock into the tone a little better, but for a first time it was fun but not as solid as I was hoping.
just about the best English language version
The Best of ALL the Musketeers movies. Don't even bother watching any of the other attempts by Hollywood to address these books. THIS is the version that captures the essence of the books. The companionship, the laughter, the gallantry and the love. All Here.
Imagine a late night, a rainy night why not, watching old swashbuckling films from the Golden Age, particularly some one of many sword fighting scenes. The rapiers are held nimbly, the fight itself a dance. And now imagine a voice out of the dark behind you saying, "It weren't like that. Why, it weren't like that at all" and you'd have the beginning of where this film's direction lies. The typical Hollywood glamorization is tossed in favor of something more naturalistic, making for a rousing time in old medieval France, where intrigue is the law of the land. Good fun.
I found this film to be pretty entertaining. A nice balance between action and comedy with a great cast including: Richard Chamberlain, Oliver Reed, Christopher Lee, Charlton Heston, Faye Dunaway and Raquel Welch. A fun easy watch, give it a try.
Surprisingly hilarious and nuanced, and holds up irresistibly well.
Michael York has never been better.
Having learned swordsmanship from his father, the young country bumpkin D'Artagnan (Michael York) arrives in Paris with dreams of becoming a king's musketeer. Unaccustomed to the city life, he makes a number of clumsy faux pas. First he finds himself insulted, knocked out and robbed by the Comte de Rochefort (Christopher Lee), an agent of Cardinal Richelieu (Charlton Heston), and once in Paris comes into conflict with three musketeers, Athos (Oliver Reed), Porthos (Frank Finlay), and Aramis (Richard Chamberlain), each of whom challenges him to a duel for some accidental insult or embarrassment. As the first of these duels is about to begin, Jussac arrives with five additional swordsmen of Cardinal Richelieu's guards. D'Artagnan sides with the musketeers in the ensuing street fight and becomes their ally in opposition to the Cardinal, who wishes to increase his already considerable power over the king, Louis XIII (Jean-Pierre Cassel). D'Artagnan also begins an affair with his landlord's wife, Constance Bonacieux (Raquel Welch), who is dressmaker to the Queen, Anne of Austria (Geraldine Chaplin). Meanwhile the Duke of Buckingham (Simon Ward), former lover of the Queen, turns up and asks for something in remembrance of her; she gives him a necklace with twelve settings of diamonds, a gift from her husband. From the Queen's treacherous lady in waiting, the Cardinal learns of the rendezvous and suggests to the none-too-bright King to throw a ball in his wife's honor, and request she wear the diamonds he gave her. The Cardinal also sends his agent Milady de Winter (Faye Dunaway) to England, who seduces the Duke and steals two of the necklace's diamonds. Meanwhile, the Queen has confided her troubles in Constance, who asks d'Artagnan to ride to England and get back the diamonds. D'Artagnan and the three musketeers set out, but on the way the Cardinal's men attack them. Only d'Artagnan and his servant make it through to Buckingham, where they discover the loss of two of the diamond settings. The Duke replaces the two settings, and d'Artagnan races back to Paris. Porthos, Athos, and Aramis, wounded but not dead as d'Artagnan had feared, aid the delivery of the complete necklace to the Queen, saving the royal couple from the embarrassment which the Cardinal had plotted...
I loved this movie and the sequel when I was a kid and I have only fond memories of it. I still see Richard Lester´s films as the best adaptation of Alexandre Dumas novel. I reckon it has that perfect blend of costume drama, lavish sets, action, intrigues, romance, adventure, and comedy captured from the book. But, I must say that I had forgotten that the humour was so very much slap stick, almost a bit too much in my book. Michael York gives life to the young, and at first naive D'Artagnan, while Chamberlain and Finlay adds weight, but the unforgettable one is without no doubt the always intense, mysterious and full on Oliver Reed. He is a tour de force in this one, and from what I have red all the stuntmen were scared shitless do duel with him as he went at it like a crazy man and he had not real idea how he was wielding his sword. The ensemble cast sports so many good names such as Lee, Dunaway, Heston, Welch etc and all puts in performances that sticks and stays. And I still remember the oh so beautiful Nicole Calfan who plays Maid Kitty.... "The Three Musketeers" constitutes only the first half of the novel and movie, and the filmmakers decided to end the picture at this point, releasing a sequel, "The Four Musketeers", a year later, which would cover the remainder of the story. While it was a wise decision, no one had informed the cast that they were, in fact, making two movies, and not one, at the time of filming, and the stars quickly filed suit against the Salkinds. After a brief but highly publicized court case, the cast were compensated, and the second film was released. As a result of the producers splitting the film into two parts, Screen Actors' Guild contracts now often feature what is called a "Salkind Clause," which requires producers to state up front how many films are being shot, and that the actors involved must be paid for each. The latter clause applies even, or even especially, when producers make that decision during or after production.
The Three Musketeers 1974 version.
The opening credits with the multiple shots looked interesting in the way it is shot.
I liked how the sword fights were filmed With wide and close up shots.
I thought it was funny jump out of the window just to be catched by the painters thing powered by a water wheel when trying to go after guy with patch over eye.
Funny how Dutee was able to get into a duel with all three Musketteers from 12. 1, 2 p.M. When he has only been there since 8:00 A.M.
I found it interesting with the sword fight with the cardinals is done with the drying table cloths hanging on the cloth lines and the nuns watching above. I think it is interesting that there is no music playing while the fight is going on.
Found it funny when the king was playing Chess with a giant chess board and live dogs as the chess pieces.
I loved the scene where the old man is being captured and the old man starts loading his pistol so slow making mistakes that the sherif no longer takes the old man seriously.
I found the sets large and look authentic and interesting.
There are random elements which seem funny put together but give the film a believable realistic element making the world depicted very real to the audience.
The casting, cutting, and fight scenes are filmed very well.
I found it interesting that most of the film the actors did their own stunts and most of them got hurt in the process including the stunt men.
I also found it interesting how many times there could be as many as five cameras filming at one time during a scene. This film had enough film to create two films after this was done.
Dante is such a clumsy character.
Ruchefort who is cardinals right hand man. I loved how after the book cloths closet falls Dante mentions all the things which Ruchefort had done to inconvenience him.
This films show's many secret passages through walls and paintings.
I thought it was cool seeing the men just walk through an armor room where all the armor is being built just to see how it is done.
The Cardinal says "Vengeance that is an expensive luxury." I thought that line was an interesting one.
I think that it was interesting that enough footage was made to make two movies for the price of making one film because so many cameras were being used.
I found it interesting how large most of the sets were.
The costumes in this film looked so real and authentic.
I actually want to see the sequel now.
I though it was great how comedy was used in this film to bring that random element of believability to the film.
I liked how the leading lady ran into a game dummy at the end of the film. It was random and unexpected.
I am surprised how little there is of the other three Musketteers in the film.
I did enjoy the fight scene with the food and how the musketeers would take food or people would keep going on with their routine as if nothing new was going on while the sword fights were going on.
Given the cast, I want to like this film, but I really don't. George MacDonald Fraser, who wrote the screenplay, had a hand in writing "Octopussy", which doesn't surprise me. Both are films totally done in by childish humour. There are a few things I find funny in this film, but for the most part, I just want them to lay off and try getting through an action sequence without slapstick nonsense. I really do think the humour makes or breaks the film. The action is not particularly well-staged or shot, so if you don't laugh, you're probably bored.